'When David Captured Jerusalem' Francis Frangipane
When David Captured Jerusalem, Part 1 & 2
Francis Frangipane firstname.lastname@example.org
One of the great errors of the Church is to limit the expectation of our faith to what God did with previous generations. It is not wrong to want what others had, but God actually has more for us than what occurred in past eras. Indeed, many promises concerning the Church are yet to be fulfilled before Jesus returns. The Bible tells us that the Church will not only experience "perilous times" in the last days (2 Tim. 3:1, KJV), but seasons of renewal and restoration (Acts 3:21). Consequently, in the midst of worldwide conflicts, the Kingdom of God on earth will continually be restored and renewed until it is conformed to the Kingdom of God in Heaven! Plan on seeing new harvests and expressions of God's glory and power. We should expect to see wonders that our fathers did not see (Acts 2:19-21)! Yes, and let us also trust that the promises we fail to possess, our children will walk in.
We can find encouragement and guidance once again in the life of King David. He was born into a time similar to ours. The Hebrews were in the Promised Land, but they shared the land with unconquered enemies. When David became king, he knew that God had promised more for Israel than the Jews had attained. In particular was the fact that the Jebusites still occupied the area now known as Jerusalem. Now if David measured himself by the success of his predecessors, he never would have contemplated an attack against the Jebusites. The Jebusites were a fierce mountain people and, in spite of being on the list of nations to be dispossessed by Israel, they had never been conquered.
Think of it: Israel's greatest heroes from Joshua to the judges had tried and failed to conquer the Jebusites. Thus, the Jebusites were contemptuous when they heard of David's plan to possess their chief city, Jebus (Jerusalem). They mocked Israel's young king, saying, "You shall not come in here, but the blind and lame will turn you away" (2 Sam.5:6).
There are two lessons here. First, for everyone who desires to see the awesome promises of God fulfilled, the Lord is saying to us all, Don't be conditioned by the past! Just because you have not seen the manifest power of God over your church or city or nation, do not take that as a forerunner of things to come. God can change everything overnight.
The second lesson is this: it probably will not be the devil himself who comes out to defeat us; rather, we must guard against the misguided advice of unbelieving Christians. Remember, the taunt of the Jebusites was that the "blind and lame shall turn you away." We may stand firm in faith against the spiritual hosts of wickedness only to be defeated by the spiritually "blind and lame" sitting next to us in church.
Who are the blind? Put simply, they are the ones who do not see the vision you see. They are blind to the faith-future God has put in your heart. We cannot let people who do not see our visions become our counselors. Beware of becoming sympathetic toward the spiritually blind. A little leaven of their unbelief can undermine your faith in a time of battle.
Along with the spiritually blind are the emotionally lame. These are people who have stumbled over something (or someone) in the past. They no longer walk stride for stride with Christ. Beware of sharing your dreams with cynics. If we heed the warnings of the "lame," it will only be a matter of time before their woundedness and lack of grace depletes our strength. Then we, too, will become overly cautious and suspicious.
Although we need counsel from other Christians, and we must remain forgiving and kind toward those in opposition, we cannot allow the words of the spiritually blind and the emotionally lame to guide us.
Of course, our real enemies are the spiritual forces of wickedness influencing our communities, not those suffering from physical problems. Jesus certainly can heal us. But the fact is, like those Jebusites, Satan has watched the failures of many Christians before us. One can almost sense the devil's scorn as pastors and intercessors pray for citywide or national revival. The devil's taunts are not without substance, for generally speaking, our spiritual forebears have failed in dislodging the strongholds of wickedness from their cities. History is indeed on the adversary's side.
But God has given us His unalterable, immutable Word. He promises:
"For the vision is yet for the appointed time; it hastens toward the goal and it will not fail. Though it tarries, wait for it; for it will certainly come, it will not delay. Behold, as for the proud one, his soul is not right within him; but the righteous will live by his faith" (Hab. 2:3-4).
To "live by faith" is to believe God until the vision He gave comes to pass. David believed God, and in spite of history being on the side of the Jebusites, we read: "Nevertheless, David captured the stronghold of Zion" (2 Sam. 5:7).
From his earliest years David knew God was calling him to defeat the Jebusites. In fact, Scripture tells us that when David was still just a youth, after he killed Goliath, he took the "Philistine's head and brought it to Jerusalem" (1 Sam. 17:54). At that time, Jerusalem was called Jebus and was occupied by the Jebusites. It was as though David were saying, "Okay, I'm just a young buck, but I've conquered this Philistine giant. Remember me; I will be back."
Fewer than twenty years later David returned, now as king of Israel. As he had conquered Goliath, so he conquered the stronghold of the Jebusites and renamed it the "City of David," soon to be known as Jerusalem.
This exploit of David’s was not centered around his personal fulfillment, but on the fulfillment of God's Word. God's Word cannot return to Him without fulfilling its purpose. When King David heard the taunts of the Jebusites, he interpreted his strategy in light of the promises of God. At stake was the integrity of the Lord's personal promise to Abraham and to his seed: "Your descendants will take possession of the cities of their enemies" (Gen. 22:17, NIV). While the Jebusites had history on their side, David had the unalterable Word of God on his side!
It is the heritage of Abraham's spiritual offspring to bring the prevailing influence of God into their communities. That is not my word or yours, but the promise of God Almighty! He said it and He will fulfill it. His people shall possess the gates of their enemies. It is a reproach to us that the devil wants our cities more than the Church does! David's desire for Jerusalem was a godly desire that came to him from the Lord. Indeed, what outwardly was to become David's city was soon to become the city of God.
As David simply believed God's Word, so also must we. The Lord has promised that "nations will come to [our] light" (Isa. 60:3). Let us take God at His word! "All things are possible to him who believes" (Mark 9:23). Do you believe? Or are you just a nice unbeliever who goes to church?
Beloved, if we fail, it is no great shame. We simply join the ranks of the spiritual heroes who went before us, who "died in faith, without receiving the promises" (Heb. 11:13). In truth, it is better to die in faith than to live in doubt.
But consider: What if we succeed? What if we find in these last days the Spirit of God helping us to see our cities healed and our nations turned?
Lord, You have promised that nations shall come to our light. Forgive me for wavering in unbelief and for allowing yesterday's failures or attainments to precondition me! I see the enemy mocking our faith, but I believe that You have prepared our nation for great things. We will follow Your promise to dislodge our enemies, even as David conquered Jebus and called it the City of God! In Jesus' name, Amen.